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KAKAWAKA
Live at Loophole

Release date: 25.01.12
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KAKAWAKA | FORK II (Germany)

 

November 2001: started to record as Kakawaka and publish the music online on a yellow website | 2002: move from Göttingen to Berlin | 2003: created website www.chproductions.de together with Hardy Küster | first CDR release “rocknroll” on copyleftrecords | 2005: first self-released CDR “Computerpunk” | first performance with Boris Monopolskij | first solo concert at the now-defunct Galerie Scherer8, Berlin-Wedding, which also marks the first use of a fork | 2006/07 one year in Tokyo, member of trio “Droise” with noise artist 23N! (Stéphane Perrin) and drummer Yōsei Takahashi | since 2007: concerts, concerts, concerts | 2008 Fork I breaks during a performance at Wallywoods in Berlin-Weißensee in front of almost no one, since then Fork II is in use| 2011: started duo “Ika Wakakan” with Iku Sakan | acoustic balloon performances with Seiji Morimoto | …

 

Once I heard someone say “Rocknroll!” (with a thick German accent) and I thought he was right. Around that time the internet was kind enough to inform me that there is such a thing as “noise music” where you can do what you want, which was what I wanted to do. Kakawaka as a word had been in my head for years, now I finally understood what it meant. It is not Japanese. But how could I perform live? In 2005 Phil Wolotkin aka Monopolka aka Boris Monopolskij came to Berlin and asked me to join him on stage for one of his performances. I was very excited and had a few days to prepare, which I did. The night of the concert Phil started to play alone and I was to join him after a while. Somehow I managed to knock over a table on stage within seconds (literally: seconds), thus disabling all of my equipment except of one microphone hooked to a distortion pedal. The rest I don’t really remember, but afterwards I was devastated and the audience took this chaotic disaster to be a very well-thought-out statement. Later the same year, I started to play solo concerts.

 

What are you searching for with your performances?

Once I find it, I will get back to you.

When I make music at home sometimes I (a) have an idea in my head, sometimes I (b) don’t. Case (a) usually leads to me failing at the realization of the initial idea and then playing around with the results of that failure until I like it. Case (b) starts at the playing-around stage. For some reason it seems to be very important to create all sounds from “scratch” (i.e. not use samples etc.).

Live performances are improvised, but since I’ve been playing the fork for quite a while now, there are many recurring patterns. When possible, I try to include the room or objects in the room. There is another kind of performance I have occasionally been doing since 2009. This involves me in a trench coat, mouth and eyes taped shut, wearing a small battery-powered amp around the neck. In my pockets I have some effect pedals that are used to manipulate cable feedback and then I stumble around blindly emitting screeching noises from the amp around my neck. This works best in public spaces.

 

Tell us more about your fork and balloons

For my first live concert I was looking for resonating things in cheap stores, when I found this huge three-pronged barbecue fork, which worked very well with a contact microphone. Since then the fork has become my most-frequently used object in live performances and it is probably the closest I ever came to “mastering an instrument”. Balloons are silly and childish but have an air of danger about them. They are full of nothing. Blowing up a balloon immediately creates a simple yet very effective narrative. There’s something peculiar about expecting to be shocked by something so predictable. And you can get a surprising variety of sounds out of them.

 

And about your costume setup: sun glasses, Bermuda shorts, and water wings?

Don’t forget the white socks, leopard vest, yellow T-shirt and the hat! Initially I wanted to look silly - maybe even funny – in the least cool way possible, I guess. Monopolka’s clownish stage persona was a big influence in the beginning. Over time things developed. Changing into the costume has become a ritual of preparation. Also, there is an element of self-sabotage: part of me would like to be taken seriously; part of me has a huge problem with that. And yet another part of me really does not like the idea that the way you dress should have any kind of influence on the way your music is received. So, I defy you to take me seriously, although I look ridiculous, which should not change your perception of my music, and PLEASE don’t take me seriously. Thank you. The water wing is for safety.

 

Does Kakawaka's fork miss your hair?

No, when I had long hair it worked as a brush, now it’s more of a comb. But it still works.

 

How do noise music impact your life?

Probably my hearing will go bad over time.

 

Why to become a noisemaker or a performer?

I am not sure I ever made that decision.

 

Future challenges:

I do not have anything planned in particular. Please feel free to challenge me if you like.

 

Recommendations:

In Berlin the amazing record stores Le Petit Mignon / Staalplaat (http://www.lepetitmignon.com) and Rumpsti Pumsti Musik (www.rumpsti-pumsti.com) are good places to get information about local shows and maybe even buy something. Dienstbar (http://dienstbar.info) has been a long-running event. Live venues change a lot but ausland (http://www.ausland-berlin.de/) is a place that has been around for many years and NK (http://www.nkprojekt.de) seems like it could last.
Also, I highly recommend the Avantgardefestival in Schiphorst, which is between Hamburg and Lübeck (http://www.avantgardefestival.de).

 

Anything else to add?

 

Rocknroll!

 

 

Kakawaka (Christoph Petermann), 21st January 2012

 

 

 

INTERNATIONAL DATABASE 2010-2015

[ar061] KAKAWAKA
Live at Loophole

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RELEASE CREDITS:

KAKAWAKA (Christoph Petermann).

Recorded by Iku Sakan (2), and by Stas Mankovich (1). October 14, 2011. Loophole, Berlin. EQ by Bonequi.

Special thanks to Loophole and Julian Ronnefeldt.
Picture by Maja Szerszen at Avantgarde Festival Schiphorst 2011. Design by Audition Records.

Contact: chproductions.de/kakawaka
loophole-berlin.com